Internal Affairs holds community forums this month

Have you ever had a complaint against a police officer and didn’t know what to do? Have you ever filed a complaint against an officer and felt that it went nowhere?

City residents who want to know more about how the complaint against police process works — from how to file one to how they are investigated — are urged to attend one of six community forums this month hosted by Internal Affairs. One forum will be held in each of the police department’s six detective divisions.

Stephen T. Johnson Sr., deputy commissioner of the Office of Professional Responsibility, which encompasses Internal Affairs, said the intent of the forums is to explain the process to the public and to illustrate the department’s commitment to transparency

“We want to ensure the public that these are taken seriously,” he said. “They key caveat is we need public participation to assist us in making it a better police department.”

While the forums are open and intended to be educational, Johnson said Internal Affairs staff will be on hand to take citizen complaints and get investigations moving.

The schedule for the Internal Affairs community forums is as follows:

*6 p.m. Monday, Oct. 10 at Audenried High School, Tasker Street and 33rd in the South Detectives Division.

*6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13 at Antonia Pantoja Charter School, American Street near Hunting Park Avenue in the East Detectives Division.

*7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18 at the Winchester Recreation Center on 15th Street near York in the Central Detectives Division.

*6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20 at the H&H Community Center on Haines Street near Limekiln Pike in the Northwest Detectives Division.

*6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 25 at Our Lady of Lourdes Church on 63rd Street near Lancaster Avenue in the Southwest Detectives Division.

*6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27 at the Perzel Community Center on St. Vincent Street near Barnard Avenue in the Northeast Detectives Division.